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19 Sept 2002 : Column 401W—continued

Private Treatment

Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many NHS patients were treated by the private sector in Somerset in (a) 1999–2000, (b) 2000–01 and (c) 2001–02. [71237]

19 Sept 2002 : Column 402W

Ms Blears: This information is not available centrally. The Department is reviewing its information needs as far as National Health Service funded activity in the private sector is concerned.

NHS Efficiency Task Force

Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health by what procedures the work of the NHS Efficiency Task Force is evaluated. [68161]

Mr. Hutton [holding answer 11 July 2002]: The National Health Service efficiency taskforce and its members provided specific and general advice on a range of issues relating to performance improvement. The taskforce last met on 28 June 1999. We continue to consult widely, with the NHS, academics and leading policy makers from abroad, on the range performance issues including efficiency.

National Health Service Framework

Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the budget was for the implementation of the National Service Framework on (a) cancer, (b) heart disease and (c) mental health in (i) 2002–03 and (ii) each of the previous three years. [68144]

Ms Blears [holding answer 11 July 2002]: Resources to support the implementation of national service frameworks are largely included in allocations to health authorities.

The NHS Cancer Plan was published in September 2000. Additional funding made available, including revenue and capital, to support its implementation after that date has been:

2001–02 £m2002–03 £m

In addition £100 million capital has been made available for CT scanners, simulators and radiotherapy planning equipment.

The national service framework (NSF) for coronary heart disease was published in March 2000. Additional revenue to support implementation from that date has been:

2000–01 £m2001–02 £m2002–03 £m

In addition £285 million capital has been made available, the bulk of which will spent over the next four years to fund modernisation and expansion at 12 cardiac centres.

The NSF for mental health was published in September 1999.

Additional revenue to support implementation of the NSF and NHS Plan from that date has been:

1999–2000 £m2000–01 £m2001–02 £m2002–03 £m

In addition £160 million capital has been made available, and a further £79 million for local councils with social services responsibilities.

19 Sept 2002 : Column 403W

NHS Doctors (Suspensions)

Dr. Murrison: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many NHS doctors have been suspended under the NHS disciplinary procedure in each of the past 10 years, broken down by (a) grade and (b) speciality. [68228]

Mr. Hutton: Following Health Service Guidelines (HSG(94)49) issued in October 1994, National Health Service trusts routinely report suspensions lasting six months or longer to the Department. Figures are not available for suspensions lasting less than six months. Reliable information is only available for 1999–2001. Information is not held centrally on speciality:

199925 individuals whose suspension commenced 1 Jan–31 December 1999
16 consultants 3 specialist registrars 2 staff grade doctors 1 "surgeon" 1 clinical medical officer 1 associate specialist 1 "doctor"
200029 new suspensions which commenced during year Jan–Dec 200024 consultants 2 senior house officers 1 medical advisor I staff grade doctor 1 "doctor"
200126 new suspensions which commenced during year Jan–Dec 200120 consultants 1 clinical medical officer 1 senior dental officer 2 staff grade doctors 2 specialist registrars

The Department is supporting the managers who are dealing with individual cases. It has seconded a former NHS Trust Human Resources Director to assist employers find ways to ending suspensions as quickly as possible.

NHS Plan

Mr. Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress has been made in developing a comprehensive policy for the National Health Service. [68534]

Mr. Hutton: The NHS Plan published in July 2000, set out a far reaching reform programme to redesign the National Health Service around the needs of the patient.

Delivering the NHS Plan takes that process a stage further, by explaining how the record increases announced in this year's Budget, 7.4 per cent. per annum annual average increases above inflation, for the five years up to 2007–08, will enable us to go further and faster.

19 Sept 2002 : Column 404W

NHS Charges

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the services provided by the National Health Service for which charges may be made. [57447]

Mr. Hutton: Treatment provided by the National Health Service is free at the point of delivery except in cases where specific legislation has been passed allowing a charge to be made. The current services for which a charge can be made are:

The NHS can also charge for the provision of accommodation and services for private resident and non-resident patients.

In addition to the above NHS hospitals can charge for certain patient services using income generation powers. However a charge can only be made where the service is considered to be additional treatments over and above the normal service provision. Any item or service that is considered to be an integral part of a patient's treatment by their clinician remains free of charge.

NHS Structural Reorganization

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what structural reorganisations have taken place in the NHS since 1997; and what estimate he has made of the total cost to the NHS of structural reorganisation programmes since 1997. [59093]

Mr. Hutton: We have abolished the internal market and devolved decision making in the National Health Service to the frontline. We have reduced the number of service commissioners from approximately 3,600 in 1997 to approximately 300 in 2002.

The intention to replace general practitioner (GP) fundholding with primary care groups (PCGs) and primary care trusts (PCTs) was announced in the New NHS: Modern and Dependable as was the intention to reduce the number of health authorities (HAs) with the responsibility for commissioning services being delegated to PCGs and PCTs. This policy was reinforced by the NHS Plan and Shifting the Balance of Power. As a result of the new NHS Reform and Health Care Professions Act, the new health authorities will become strategic health authorities, and the changes to health authorities and PCTs under Shifting the Balance of Power will be in place from 1 October 2002.

The number of NHS trusts has reduced through a series of locally led mergers and demergers with a number of community trusts merging with PCTs.

The table shows the change in numbers of organisations and different levels of responsibilities within the NHS since 1 April 1997.

Service Commissioners and
Service CommisionersProvidersService Providers
1 April 19971003,565N/AN/A425
1 April 19981003,383N/AN/A403
1 April 199999Scheme ended481N/A342
1 April 20009945917326
1 October 20009543440326
1 April 200195239239318
1 April 200228 (note 1)1303274

Note 1:

In practice, commissioning of services has been delegated from HAs to PCTs. HAs will become StHAs in October 2002, subject to the NHS Reform and Health Professions Bill.

19 Sept 2002 : Column 405W

The establishment of primary care groups was funded using monies released by the abolition of GP fundholding. The previous Government had set aside an annual budget of £180 million to run fundholding. We have used those monies both to set up PCGs and to improve services to patients. Approximately £150 million additional monies was used following the establishment of PCGs. Approximately £63 million of central funding has been made available to support the establishment of primary care trusts.

The New NHS: Modern and Dependable contained a commitment to deliver £1 billion management costs savings over five years (1997–98 to 2001–02), including £100 million in the first year. The changes as a result of Shifting the Balance of Power will release £100 million savings from reducing bureaucracy and this will be placed in a transitional fund in 2002–03 and 2003–04 and used to fund childcare facilities for NHS staff.

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